Moving day is tomorrow. L goes up to Dallas with the grandparents this evening. The house still looks very much not ready for the movers. We have so much to do, but most of it will have to wait until this afternoon.
I know that I should be reading my Bible and meditating on the Word of the Lord, but it is extremely difficult to shut off the practical part of my brain that is running and wants to be accomplishing tasks related to getting us ready for the move.
I am also hungry, because we gave the fridge away to the Salvation Army on Monday, and have been eating takeout for two days now. Which means there are no snacks laying around or leftovers to munch on. I am sick of peanut butter.
It’s the moment where we are down to the finish line, but not quite there yet. The house closes on Monday if all goes as planned. That leaves us a little less than two weeks to focus on getting unpacked and adjusted to Austin. So far, everything has gone remarkably well, which has kept me mostly in line with thinking that this is God’s will, and he is opening all of the doors that need to be opened to make this happen.
I am trying not to get too excited about school and living in Austin again until after we are completely there and the house is completely sold and I am totally in my classes and living the dream. It is hard not to get excited, though. The thought of being back in Austin again in the fall, which is one of the better times of year to be in Austin, and going to school full time, surrounded by students who have that energy of anything is possible, it is almost too good to be true. I know that it is really happening, and yet, I am much more inclined to reserve my enthusiasm for when there is no doubt that I am in the middle of it, and it is everything I hoped it could be.
I want to feel like I am picking up graduate school as if fifteen years hadn’t passed since when I should have started it. I can’t pretend away those years, as they have contributed to my growth and development more than I probably can guess just sitting here thinking about them, but I don’t want to be walking around Austin this fall with a bunch of baggage from the old days, either.
When I have taken the time to read through a fair amount of my writing from ten to fifteen years ago, I can see that I was mostly just frightened to grow up. I needed to move on from being more or less the same person who dorked his way through college and thought that the entire world was his accompanying cast in an epic movie, and get on about the business of figuring out why I wasn’t connecting with people like I really wanted to. But, I remained scared to break away from the MCE gang, because they were comfortable in the way that a well-worn pair of running shoes is comfortable–the shoes are familiar and have become almost a part of you after many morning runs, but they are actually messing up your back and joints because the soles are shot on them.
I had a myriad of preconceived notions and assumptions about how I and others should be, and refused to admit that I did. I was mostly responsible for my lack of success professionally and socially, but I wanted to vacillate between being too hard on myself and blaming everyone else for my problems.
What I really didn’t want to admit was that all of the hours people my age with careers and family had put in at school dances, frat parties, and other social functions were important hours of micro-lessons of engagement that I would have to learn myself in painful ways throughout my late twenties and early thirties. In other words, I had to go through some of the same hells others had already gone through before I could really know myself and where I stood in this world. It was so much easier to imagine that fate would see me magically transported into high society and the good life someplace with me having to expend little effort. I hadn’t read Harry Potter and had only seen one of the movies, but I knew enough about it to know that it would have had a toxic effect on me if I had gotten caught up on it–not because witchcraft is of the devil, but because unrealistic wish fulfillment from not putting in the hours of work is the sort of thing that traps many young people.
I am still learning to remind myself when communicating with others that I need to do a better job of exhibiting an interest and willingness to open up and engage with them. Unless I really am in a hurry to be somewhere, I need to stop and talk if people are stopping and talking. I need to remind myself that if I am feeling uncomfortable because the group dynamic has suddenly changed to a circle of people and I am not keeping up with the conversation, I don’t necessarily need to begin planning my escape.
I can’t ever assume that I know best or understand best how to approach a group or an individual or that I know best what to say–only God knows best. I have to keep my mind and heart open and as empty of my preconceived notions as possible. I should, however, consider first if the other person is scowling back at me that I might have a scowl on my face. Then, I should also consider that they are absorbed in something else and have no particular intentions of any kind toward me.